“How did you learn five languages?”
I don’t think this was my most brilliant moment. It was at his talk and book signing for his new book, We Might as Well Win, at Book Passage in Corte Madera. As he signed my copy, he explained that he learned four in school, and then Spanish just came very easily to him. He said once you learn your first second language, the rest are pretty easy.
I didn’t ask him more questions, because there was a line of people behind me, and also because as the words came out of my mouth, I realized it was possibly the silliest question I could have ever asked. I mean, out of all the things.
But you know, you might as well ask.
Well, I confess that I was hoping for a comeback story, like, “I was terrible at learning languages as a child, but I just kept at it, and now I can speak five.”
Maybe there’s more to the story, and he’s just not telling it all, because his story about learning five languages wouldn’t fill up Book Passage in Corte Madera.
It was a full house, but it wasn’t as packed as it was the night Ram Dass was there. I don’t mean this to be a competition, but it’s true. Ram Dass, now he can pack a bookstore.
I liked his talk. He inspired and amazed us with witty anecdotes that at least left this blogger thinking anything’s possible.
You might think that this line of thinking contrasts heavily with the message in my earlier post in which I proclaimed that I’m done with winning, but au contraire. Here he presented winning as a viable option. Do you see the difference? You don’t have to do it, but you can do it.
I much prefer this over the “you should be winning” formula, which implies that if you’re not winning, there’s something wrong with you.
Bruyneel says his biggest lessons have come from losing.
So what have I learned from losing? That is my question for myself before I retire for the evening, and I shall return to this topic after some deep thought.
Anyone care to add their own thoughts? What are lessons you’ve learned? They could even be in a metaphorical sense. I’m fascinated by the racing-mirrors-life analogy. But then, how do you apply it to your every day life?
Maybe this is a question for Ram Dass.